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Prestwick sailors getting out amongst the wildlife…

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Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

With the festive season almost upon us the D-Zero Class Association would like to wish all D-Zero sailors (and those who are watching from the sidelines) a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New year.  Even the big man in red has been going for a cheeky sail…..

Thankfully, even with it being the festive season, the sailing calendar is still pretty busy. We have rounds 3 and 4 of the D-Zero Winter Series in the form of the Yorkshire Dales Brass Monkey and the Grafham Grand Prix taking place between Christmas and New Year. So whatever the big man in red brings you (and lets hope it is new toys for your boat) there are plenty of opportunities to show them off, even those in the class who are of a lest festive disposition…

Looking further ahead to 2019 the class events calendar is taking shape nicely in what is the 5th Anniversary year for the class. We are currently finalising a sponsorship deal for the UK National/Open Championships in June and are in discussions with sponsors for the Inland Championships which take place in April.

Before all of that though there is the traditional start to the UK Dinghy Sailing season the RYA Dinghy Show taking place at Alexandra Palace. We are pleased to announce that the D-Zero will be there. More details on this (including how to get discounted tickets) will follow.

But for now, enjoy the season and we hope to see you all on and off the water in 2019.

Harken D-Zero UK National Championships 2018 – Report and Results

Thanks to 2018 D-Zero UK National Champion Steve Bolland for his word of wisdom and VR for their excellent work making the videos:

Three days of sun, sea and sailing. What more could you want? Some rather nice people to sail against would help and we had those in abundance at the 2018 Harken D-Zero Nationals hosted by the Mount Batten Centre and Plymouth Youth Sailing.

To be honest, other than the sun, the forecast wasn’t looking great for the weekend with light to non-existent breezes predicted for all three days. A light northerly gradient breeze and soaring temperatures on day 1 augured well for a potential sea breeze though and it delivered in spades, kicking in at close to 15 knots, rock steady from the south.


Race 1 and with the tide just starting to ebb the choice up the beats was to go left, left, left or the other way. Pre-tournament favourite, Ian Morgan (Netley), led at the first mark from youth prodigy Charlie Ellse (Restronguet), having judged the layline to perfection. These two pulled out an embarrassingly large lead as the race progressed but it was looking like a Cornish benefit with Portpean and Restronguet boats closing out the top 5 – Stacey Bray, Darren Williams and Hugo Helene respectively.

For race 2, having decided that, after all, right was not the way to go up the beats, Steve Bolland (Bristol Corinthian) took the pin end of the line, hit the port layline and led at the first mark and for the remainder of the race. Morgan took another useful 2nd ahead of Williams, new boy Alistair ‘Storky’ McLauglin (Prestwick) who had only bought his boat the week before, and Bray.

The Cornish contingent was once again all over race 3 like a rash, filling 4 of the top 5 places at the first mark and 3 of the top 5 at the finish. What do they put in those pasties? Although Ellse and Morgan led initially they did not pull out as they had in race 1. Bolland picked up a nice lift (on the left inevitably) on the final beat to edge in to the lead but could not hold off his attackers downwind and the finishing order was Ellse, Morgan, Bolland, Bray and Williams.

Overnight, Morgan and Ellse had built up a nice lead over Williams, Bray and Bolland but with a lot of sailing still to come.

Day 2 was again hotter than expected but with no gradient wind it was debatable whether the sea breeze would kick in in time for the late morning start. It did, but never really rose above 10 knots.

Race 4 was taken by Jon Aston (Grafham Water) via the unusual tactic of going up the middle of the beat and sailing the shifts. Bolland was 2nd at the first mark but dropped down to 5th. If the boy could sail downwind he’d be half useful. Ellie Craig was starting to show form and Storky and Bray both also had countable results. With overnight leaders Morgan and Ellse both having relative shockers the championship was wide open again at the half way stage.

For the third and fourth races in a row, Bolland and Storky claimed the pin end of the startline in races 5 and 6, even managing to stay out of each other’s way, mostly. This was becoming a habit, and a good one, as they recorded 1, 3 in race 5 and 1, 2 in the final race of the day. Having a one-way race track involving minimum thought was clearly playing to their strengths. Also going well and moving up the leaderboard were Jon Ashton, going extremely well in the lighter airs, James Edmund (Queen Mary), Tim Weeden (Emsworth Slipper) with Bray and Craig also putting in another couple of bankable results.

With one day to go the overnight leaderboard was somewhat different from the previous day, Bolland now holding a useful lead over Storky and Morgan with Bray, Williams and Ellse not too far behind.

The final day started off blisteringly hot and didn’t relent. Were we on the continent or something? However, with no gradient wind once again the sea breeze was slow in appearing. Would the hour’s postponement allow the breeze to fill in or would we all be heading for an early shower? Bolland was hoping for the latter but a fitful southerly began to build and we were sent out for the final two races.

Inevitably, Bolland and Storky claimed the pin end, or thereabouts, and were off like scalded cats up the left hand side of the beat. Both in the top few at the first mark they were smiling like Cheshire cats who hadn’t been scalded at all. By the bottom mark Ellse and Craig had established a slim lead but Bolland and Storky flew up the final beat to be 1, 2. However, once again Bolland showed his frailities downwind, dropping to 3rd with Storky taking the win from Craig.

However, despite having done just enough to take the championship with a race to spare, Bolland sportingly stayed out for the final race, keeping the fleet amused by capsizing on the first run for which he earned ‘Deck of the Day’. It sounded like that anyway. Thanks for the nomination, it will be an award I’ll treasure always. I had to take a short cut to see what was happening at the front but Ellse was using his athletic frame to good effect in the marginally stronger breeze, winning from Storky, Richard Major (Grafham), Craig and Edmund.

Packing up was a relaxed affair in the late June sunshine with much chat about the quality of the racing and next year’s champs at the Weymouth & Portland National Sailing Academy.

Many thanks to title sponsor Harken, distributing an array of hardware to all in the fleet, Devoti Sailing and Your support is valued. Also many thanks to the Mount Batten Centre, Plymouth Youth Sailing and the excellent race officering of Keith Kendall and his team.

Next up is the Clevedon open meeting on 7th July.

For those who were not there, or those who were and want to see where they got things right (or horribly wrong) the race tracks are posted on the Sail Racer website, click here to see them. Thanks to Simon and Claire from SailRacer who did a great job over the weekend with the tracking of the event and posting updates on social media during the the racing.

On to the overall prizes:

1st Steve Bolland GBR11 Bristol Corinthian
2nd Alistair Mclaughlin GBR22 Prestwick
3rd (and 1st youth) Charlie Ellse GBR238 Restronguet
4th (and 1st lady) Ellie Craig GBR195 Draycote Water

Spot prizes were awarded as follows:

Mid fleet prize – Seb Prowse GBR170 Queen Mary
Furthest Travelled (x2) – Martin Latimer GBR57 Largs and Alistair Mclaughlin GBR22 Prestwick
Fastest on the Speed Wall – John Aston GBR3 Grafham Water

Full Results can be found by clicking here.

Thanks to the generosity of our title sponsor Harken no one went away empty handed with a choice of bottles, bottles openers, sunglasses and stickers for every competitor. Thanks also to our hosts, Plymouth Youth Sailing and the venue Mount batten Watersports and Activities Centre for host ‘the best nationals yet’.

Finally Martin Latimer generously provided incumbent class chair Paul Jefferies with a bottle of whisky on behalf the the members of the Class Association for his hard work and for choosing to stay on as Class Chair.

The 2019 D-Zero Nationals are being held at Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy on the 21st-23rd June. this is the 5th anniversary for the class and preparations are already underway to make it the best nationals so far.

Harken D-Zero Nationals 2018 – Final Day Video

Finals day video report:

Harken D-Zero Nationals Day 2 Video

The Day 2 video from VR Sport, full report and Day 3 video to follows soon!

Morgan Sails Southern Circuit – Emsworth Slipper Open Meeting Report and Results

The wind forecast for the Emsworth Slipper D-Zero open meeting was not exactly encouraging with dire warnings of 5 knot gusts, and this probably discouraged a few potential competitors. Indeed, on the morning of the event Emsworth’s Mill Pond was exactly that with not a ripple to be seen. However, by late morning there were signs of some sort of thermal activity although to call it a sea breeze would be a slight overstatement. Six visitors joined the local fleet for the day, and it was game on.

Race officer Dave Cockerill and his team set a trapezoid course with a challenging start line on the edge of the deep water channel. Race 1 set the tone for the day with Ian Morgan leading soon after the start, and a game of chicken followed for the first beat, with those who dared to sail furthest into the shallows to cheat the tide without running aground making significant gains. It seemed reasonable to assume that local knowledge would help here, although D-Zero’s own David Valentine proved that this was not necessarily true……….twice!!

Ian led around the windward mark, and maintained his position around the next three marks…..we could all see where this was heading. However, the Fat Lady hadn’t sung yet, and on the final beat to the finish Adam Humphrey who had borrowed the demo boat for the day managed to sneak ahead to take the win, followed by Ian with Ben Oakley third.

There was a tad more breeze for race 2 and John Aston took an early lead but was overtaken by Ian shortly before the first mark. This time Ian made no mistake and maintained his lead, pursued by John and Tom Southwell.

Race 3 started close to high water. The lack of flood tide caught a few out, with several judged OCS. Richard Major led the fleet around and crossed the finishing line to a deathly silence.
However, the Netley duo had made no such mistake and the finishing order was Ian, Tom and Adam.

Determined that everyone should get their money’s worth, the race officer called the fleet to the start for a fourth race. By now the wind was dropping, the ebb tide was making itself felt and tea was calling. The first beat and reach were dispatched pretty quickly, to be followed by a long run against the tide. The top three finishing positions were a repeat of the previous race.

In the final reckoning, overall victory went to Ian Morgan, with Adam Humphrey taking second from Tom Southwell on countback. Special mention should be made of Richard Major who ensured his appearance in the prizes by getting his boat almost terminally stuck in the weed just after leaving the slipway, hence earning the coveted “Muppet of the Day” award! Many thanks to the race team who ensured great racing throughout the fleet in tricky conditions, and to all those behind the scenes providing safety cover and the all important tea!

Rank SailNo Club HelmName R1 R2 R3 R4 Nett
1st 250 Netley Ian Morgan (2.0) 1.0 1.0 1.0 3.0
2nd No Numberr Emsworth Slipper SC Adam Humphrey 1.0 (6.0) 3.0 3.0 7.0
3rd 217 Netley Thomas Southwell (10.0) 3.0 2.0 2.0 7.0
4th 176 Emsworth SC Ben Oakley 3.0 5.0 (19.0 OCS) 5.0 13.0
5th 186 ESSC / Thorney Island SC Tim Weeden 4.0 4.0 (8.0) 8.0 16.0
6th 102 Emsworth Slipper SC Stuart Coles 5.0 (7.0) 6.0 6.0 17.0
7th 3 Grafham Water SC John Aston 9.0 2.0 (19.0 OCS) 7.0 18.0
8th 267 TISC Steve Bromley (11.0) 8.0 4.0 10.0 22.0
9th 173 Emsworth SC Peter Jenkins 7.0 14.0 5.0 (16.0) 26.0
10th 151 Emsworth SC James Jenkins 14.0 10.0 7.0 (17.0) 31.0
11th 187 Emsworth Slipper SC Simon Boylin 6.0 11.0 (19.0 OCS) 15.0 32.0
12th 66 Emsworth Slipper SC David Valentine 12.0 9.0 (14.0) 11.0 32.0
13th 116 Emsworth Slipper SC Jo Humphrey 8.0 12.0 13.0 (19.0 DNF) 33.0
14th 268 Emsworth Slipper SC Simon Robinson (16.0) 13.0 10.0 12.0 35.0
15th 169 Grafham Water SC Richard Major 15.0 17.0 (19.0 OCS) 4.0 36.0
16th 181 NHEBSC Gordon Stewart (18.0) 15.0 12.0 9.0 36.0
17th 121 Emsworth Slipper SC Scott Derham (17.0) 16.0 9.0 13.0 38.0
18th 133 Emsworth Slipper SC Jez Adams 13.0 (18.0) 11.0 14.0 38.0

King George Gallop 2018 – Winter Series Update

Video highlights courtesy of Ian Morgan

On the 6th January 2018 the D-Zero Winter Series resumed at a new event on the calendar the King George Gallop. This event was a replacement for the much loved Bloody Mary which had to be cancelled due to very low water levels at Queen Mary sailing club.

Photo Copyright Tim Olin

4 D-Zeros gathered on the start the. The usual suspects of Ian Morgan, Tom Southwell and Nigel Austin were joined by Queen Mary refugee Seb Prowse to do battle for class honours. The event was in the same format as the Bloody Mary in that it was a pursuit race so the start line was far from crowded but working hard for the entire races was definitely on the cards.

Photo Copyright Tim Olin

After Ian and Tom nearly tripped over each other at the start they showed Seb and Nigel a clean pair of transoms. Ian managed to pull through to 20th at the finish put some distance between himself and Tom (32nd) at the finish. Seb (50th) got the better of Nigel (56th) in the class honours.

Photo Copyright Tim Olin

So this means little has changed in the overall D-Zero Winter Series standings. Tom maintains a slim lead over Ian with Nigel just a couple of points back in 3rd. Seb moves to 4th having now done 2 events and could still do enough events to not count any DNC results if he goes to the Tiger Trophy and the Oxford Blue now that the Steve Nicholson Trophy is off the calendar due to low water levels at Pitsford reservoir.

You can find the full D-Zero Winter Series standings if you click here. With full results for the King George Gallop full if you click here.

In the GJW Direct/SailJuice Winter Series standings the D-Zero is currently sitting pretty with 3 boats in the top 10 (Nigel in 5th, Tom in 6th and Ian in 8th). You can view more about the GJW Direct/Sailjuice Winter Series bu clicking here.

Nationals 2017 Video Compilation

Nationals 2017 Day 2 Photo Gallery

All the photos in the below gallery from the D-Zero Nationals 2017 are copyright Paul Jefferies. High resolution images are available on request. Please complete the Webmaster contact form to obtain copies, make sure you state the image file name(s).

Other images from the nationals are available in our Facebook group.

D-Zero Winter Series 2017/2018 Round 2 – Datchet Flyer

Nigel Austin braves the cold at the Datchet Flyer Photo Copyright Tim Olin

The weekend of the 9th and 10th December saw the D-Zero fleet assemble at Datchet Water Sailing Club  for round 2 of the D-Zero Winter Series 2017/2017.

Unperturbed by the forecast of sub zero temperatures on Saturday and and heavy snow on the Sunday all but one of the pre-entries arrived and set out to race.

Race 1 saw current series leader Ian Morgan show the rest of the D-Zeros the way round the course posting a 27th overall. Some distance behind him D-Zero poster boy Tom Southwell came home second followed by Sebastian Prowse and the ever present Nigel Austin.

Some close racing at the mark roundings Photo Copyright Tim Olin

Race 2 saw little change in the conditions but a much improved performance by Ian who posted a 7th who had Tom hot on his heels in 8th and Sebastian only a short distance back in 11th with Nigel again bringing up the rear.

Video highlights courtesy of Ian Morgan

Race 3 and it was more of the same from Ian who posted an 8th. Tom couldn’t quite match his previous race exploits posting a 15th with Nigel having his best race yet and posting a 22nd. Sebastian probably made the best call though deciding to take and early shower.

Sebastian Prowse before his early shower Photo Copyright Tim Olin

With a good performance on Sunday Tom could get ahead of Ian with Nigel and Sebastian not too far apart for 3rd and 4th. Unfortunately the Met office got the forecast right for once. The heavy snow meant launching and recovery was nigh on impossible on the icy slopes of the reservoir and there was no more sailing to be had.

This means after 2 rounds of the 2017/2018 Winter Series that defending Champion Ian Morgan is leading ahead of Tom Southwell with Rob Lennox in 3rd and Nigel Austin in 4th. For full series results click here.

The next round of the D-Zero Winter Series 2017/2018 is the Yorkshire Dales Brass Monkey on the 27th December. This is closely followed on the 30th December by the Grafham Grand Prix. These events are also rounds 3 and 4 of the GJW Direct Sailjuice Winter Series.

There will be a further announcement on the Winter Series events shortly as the Steve Nicholson Trophy has been cancelled.

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